Friday, April 30, 2010

Whole Grain Gluten Free Bread

“Have you tried Udi’s bread?” is the question going around the gluten free community. Udi’s Whole Grain Gluten Free Bread is unbelievably good. It is not just “good for gluten free bread”. It is good bread. It is also sometimes hard to find.

I appreciate the convenience of being able to buy good gluten free bread and other pre-prepared gluten free foods. However, with both my daughter and myself avoiding gluten, it’s good to be able to prepare gluten free foods at home as well. This is especially true of bread, since we usually eat breakfast and lunch at home and can go through bread quickly.

With the Udi’s Gluten Free bread in mind, I developed a recipe for Gluten Free Whole Grain Bread. It also makes really good sandwich rolls. I wish there was some way to share the delicious fragrance in my house when the bread came out of the oven. The whole house smelled like homemade bread, real bread.

When I worked as a food scientist developing products for the food industry, I always used a scale to measure ingredients. At home, I’ve always used conventional measuring cups and spoons. Shauna at Gluten Free Girl and the Chef has been advocating the use of a scale for baking, and I started to think about how nice it was to develop recipes with a food scale.

So I bought this Cuisinart Food Scale, and I really like working with it.

Consequently, in the interest of accuracy, I’ve listed the weight of each ingredient (in grams) first, then the volumetric measurements (as close as possible) following each ingredient.

This recipe makes either two one-pound loaves, or twelve sandwich rolls. I made one loaf and six sandwich rolls for the photos.

Whole Grain Gluten Free Bread

160 grams (g) warm water (2/3 cup)
40 g granulated sugar (3 ½ tablespoons)
11 g active dry yeast (3 ½ teaspoons)

146 g tapioca starch (1 1/3 cups)
130 g brown rice flour (1 cup)
102 g potato starch (2/3 cup)
29 g teff flour (1/4 cup)
14 g flax seed meal (2 tablespoons)
6 g xanthan gum (2 ¼ teaspoons)
8 g salt (1 ½ teaspoons)
6 g baking powder, double acting (1 ½ teaspoons)

60 g canola oil (1/4 cup)
235 g egg whites (1 cup or about 6 egg whites)
8 g apple cider vinegar (2 teaspoons)

For loaves, spray the ends of loaf pans with non-stick spray and line bottom and long sides with parchment.
For sandwich rolls, line pans with parchment.

Add warm water, sugar and yeast to mixing bowl and let stand about 15 minutes.

Combine the remaining dry ingredients in a bowl, whisking them to blend well. Set aside.

Add the vinegar, oil and egg whites to the yeast, sugar and water in the mixing bowl, and turn on mixer to a low setting.

Add the dry ingredients, about 1/3 at a time while continuing to mix at low speed. Scrape bowl with a spatula, turn up the mixer to medium speed (4 on a KitchenAid stand mixer). Mix for two minutes. The finished “dough” will look like a thick batter.

For loaves, divide batter evenly between two loaf pans.
For sandwich rolls, using a one ounce ice cream scoop, measure out two level scoops of batter for each sandwich roll.

Flatten and spread out the batter a little for the rolls.

The batter will need to be covered while rising to keep from drying out, but the batter is really sticky. For these photos, I sprinkled rice flour on the loaf, then I covered it with plastic wrap. I sprayed non-stick cooking spray on the rolls, but did not cover them.

Both methods worked. This batter/dough doesn’t rise as much as regular bread dough made with wheat, but it will rise about 40 to 50 percent, and the rise time (also called proofing) helps to develop the flavor.  This is what they looked like before rising:

And this is what they looked like after rising:

Allow to rise in a warm place for an hour, then bake in a preheated 375° F oven.

Rolls: bake 18 to 20 minutes
Loaves: bake 35 – 40 minutes.

Allow to cool for 5 to 10 minutes, then finish cooling on cooling racks.  Enjoy!

Update (January 3, 2012):  Someone asked how much it costs to make this bread.  Ingredient costs can vary a great deal, so I can't say exactly what it will cost you to make it.  That said, about $2.50 per loaf (this batch size makes two small loaves).  I'll be doing a post soon on ways to reduce the cost of eating gluten free!

Printable Recipe

For more gluten-free recipes, visit the Gluten-Free Homemaker's Gluten-Free Wedneaday.  Also linked to 4 Moms' Bread Making Linkup and Made From Scratch Monday.


  1. That looks delicious! I have yet to try my hand at gluten-free breads, but I plan to start soon. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I noticed you're in Bellingham, WA. I'm going to be moving to Kenmore soon, so we'll be neighbors, right? (I don't know the area yet, so I'm not sure how far that is)

  2. I agree, that does look amazingly delicious! I don't have Teff flour and have never seen it in stores; are there any substitutes that would be close? I have almond flour and coconut flour at home...
    Thanks for your help!

  3. Iris-I don't know where Kenmore is. I've live here about a year and still getting to know the area. Hope you enjoy Washington is much as my family and I do.

    Julie-Teff flour adds a wonderful texture to gf baked goods, unlike any other flours I've tried. If your local health food store doesn't carry it, you can order it from

    Thanks for the comments!

  4. Hi Cindy~ thanks for the recipe! I saw this on the Gluten Freeville group on Facebook and am looking forward to trying it! Could I use the dough cycle on my bread machine for the mixing? I have a good nearby gluten-free bakery, but would love to start making my own bread again! Looking forward to reading more...I am a new follower!

  5. I don't have a bread machine (yet), but I'm hoping to get one soon. From what I've read about them, they work for gf bread if you use a manual mix cycle (short mix cycle) or use the gf cycle if your machine has one. Gluten free bread doesn't need the long mix time of the regular bread cycle because there is no gluten to develop.

    Please let me know how it works out if you try it!

  6. Is there any good substitute for teff? I can't find it anywhere and want to make bread before I can find some (even if it's on amazon :) or somewheres.) :) This looks incredibly delicious though! I'm looking for good GF bread recipes again-----as I can never seem to find a really good one---that actually tastes like bread. If I try this before I get your comment (or after it) I'll let you know how it goes. I blog gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, soy-free (95%), and red meat free too. (And its also about eating and living frugally!) You are more than welcome to pop on over to my site sometime! :) I'd love to have you! ~Ari

    Ariana Anderson
    The Frugally Rich Life
    GF, dairy-free, sugar-free and more

  7. I don't know of any substitution for teff. Sorghum might work, but I'm not sure.

    If I didn't have teff, I would try making the recipe without it since there's a fairly small amount in the bread.

    I had never worked with teff before developing this recipe, but it was on the ingredient statement of the Udi's bread that was the inspiration for my bread.

  8. Where in the Bellingham area can you purchase Udi's bread? I got no hits when I looked for a retailer in that area.

    BTW, Bellingham is about 80 miles north of Kenmore, WA, and about 25 more miles north of Bellingham is the Canadian border. It's all freeway and takes about 1.75-2 hours--Kenmore to the border.


  9. I purchase Udi's products at the Bellingham Food Coop.


  10. I think the key really is the Teff flour. I just converted my tried-and-true bread recipe to include Teff flour and now it's so much like "Real" wheat bread, it's unbelievable. Teff has that same "nutty" quality as wheat. I'll have to try your recipe next to compare, although I couldn't be happier with how mine turned out! :-)

  11. Adding teff to my shopping list and making this very soon!

  12. Amazingly delicious!!! My daughter and I just made this recipe. We divided the dough and made a loaf and four buns/rolls. It worked perfectly, it doubled in size while rising. We topped the buns with sesame seeds to prevent sticking and add favor and we dusted the top of the loaf with some rice flour and GF oats. As soon as the buns had cooled we made cheeseburgers and OMG! We can haz cheeezzburger! This recipe will become a staple. We highly recommend this recipe for anyone looking for a fantastic GF bread! Thank you so much for posting this recipe.

  13. What size bread pan do you use for a 1 lb loaf?

  14. This bread is AMAZING! I've been Gf since 2006 and have been using Udi's bread for about a year after trying to find a good recipe for homemade bread. Now I feel like I've finally found a recipe that I can use consistently (and I'm tellimg you, I've tried a LOT of recipes!). Thank you so much for sharing this!!!!!!

  15. The bread pan I used for this batch was 7 x 3 inches at the bottom, 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 inches at the top, and 2 inches deep. I think it's a little smaller than a standard size loaf pan.

    Thank you for all the nice comments!


  16. This bread looks fantastic, Cindy! I love that you used teff flour in it, and I can't wait to try it out. Have you tried making it in a bread machine, by any chance? Thanks for the recipe!

  17. Claire,

    I have not tried it in a bread machine (I don't have one). What kind of bread machine do you have, and are you happy with it?

    I've been thinking of getting one of the bread machines with a gluten-free cycle.


  18. I am super impressed with this bread! I've tried some bread recipes with varied success, but I've never seen such great looking sandwich rolls!

  19. I am curious, how is it the next day? Did you have any left to try? Will have to get some Teff flour to give it a try.

  20. Thanks for your recipe! I can't wait to try, using my cuisinart bread machine to do the mixing for me, andthen doing buns in the oven. I currently make my own bread, but so far have not tried buns. (and I love Teff too!!)

  21. It looks terrific! Thanks for sharing this for February's bread challenge.

  22. Great post, and thanks for linking back!

  23. Hello,
    I have formulated a gluten-free bread dough that uses no all. Just water and oil... and it is really good. I also suggest using a tall (4 in) loaf pan, as it supports a higher rise. If you would like it sometime, email me at

  24. Cindy, this is the best gluten-free thing I have ever tasted! You are a genius! It looks, smells, and tastes like "real" bread, only better! Amazing!
    If you can reproduce Udi's GF Blueberry muffins, my life would be complete. They have a nice, light texture, although a little skimpy on the blueberries.
    If you're looking for a new challenge, i'd love to try whatever you come up with. :-)
    Thanks again!

  25. We just had the udi's bread for lunch and after I saw my 2 boys gobble it down, I immediately made a search for a recipe. I paid 5$ for the loaf at Trader Joe's, do you have any idea how much your home made version cost per loaf ? We transitionned our family of 4 to a GFCFSF diet 6 weeks ago and everyone is feeling MUCH better but it is killing my budget. Your bread looks delicious, I can't wait to make it ! Thanks,

  26. I just did a cost analysis and added that information to the end of the post. Great question!


  27. These look wonderful! We aren't able to eat Udi's bread because of the eggs or dairy, not sure which one, but it contains one of my daughter's allergens. We recently came across Schar. It is so much like bread made with gluten flour, it's unreal. Even the rolls are fantastic! It's a little pricey, but well worth it for my daughter if it doesn't end up in the trash. And, it is allergy friendly plus gluten free.
    Your recipe sounds good and looks amazing! I wonder what I could substitute for the eggs?
    Thanks for joining in 'Made From Scratch' Monday! I appreciate your recipe :)

  28. Can something be subbed for the potato starch? I am newly potato free. :(

    1. Oh no! Potatoes are one of my favorite foods. I would have a difficult time giving them up.

      You could probably substitute another starch like cornstarch, tapioca starch, or even sweet rice flour, usint the same amount as the potato starch in the recipe.

    2. I subbed corn starch for the potato & the bread came out beautifully! : ) Thank you so much!

    3. Thank you - good to know!

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